• synonyms


  1. of, relating to, or involving electrical induction or magnetic induction.
  2. operating by induction: an inductive machine.
  3. of, relating to, or employing logical induction: inductive reasoning.
  4. Embryology. eliciting the action of an embryonic inducer.
  5. serving to induce; leading or influencing (usually followed by to).
  6. introductory.
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Origin of inductive

From the Late Latin word inductīvus, dating back to 1600–10. See induct, -ive
Related formsin·duc·tive·ly, adverbin·duc·tive·ness, nounan·ti-in·duc·tive, adjectivean·ti-in·duc·tive·ly, adverban·ti-in·duc·tive·ness, nounpre·in·duc·tive, adjectivesem·i-in·duc·tive, adjectiveun·in·duc·tive, adjective

Usage note

3. See deductive.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for inductively

Historical Examples

  • The occurrence of amblyopia as a result of non-use has been deductively constructed and is not inductively proved by observation.

    Schweigger on Squint

    C. Schweigger

  • Doubtless these known fundamental conditions have been inductively established.

  • So far as it is inductively true that all border-war is evil, it is deductively true that a given border-war is therefore evil.

  • What we are concerned with now is to deal with the facts on which this alleged general principle is inductively based.

    The Great Illusion

    Norman Angell

  • It cannot serve as a basis from which we can inductively extend our knowledge of facts beyond what the senses and memory reveal.

British Dictionary definitions for inductively


  1. relating to, involving, or operated by electrical or magnetic inductionan inductive reactance
  2. logic maths of, relating to, or using inductioninductive reasoning
  3. serving to induce or cause
  4. a rare word for introductory
  5. biology producing a reaction within an organism, esp induction in embryonic tissue
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Derived Formsinductively, adverbinductiveness, noun
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for inductively



early 15c., from Old French inductif or directly from Late Latin inductivus, from induct-, past participle stem of inducere (see induce). As a term in logic, from 1764.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper